The coalition board of directors and staff are extremely proud to announce that Vanessa Timmons, our executive director, is the recipient of the 2017 Diane Reese Excellence in Advocacy in the Movement—D.R.E.A.M.—Award from the National Network to End Domestic Violence.
This award seeks to recognize one who encapsulates and perpetuates Ms. Reese’s profound and transcendent legacy that continues to shape and inform a collective vision of a world in which violence against women no longer exists. Diane Reese was a founding member of the West VA coalition, an integral champion in the passage of the Violence Against Women Act and its subsequent reauthorizations. She was a renowned educator and an ardent national activist with many accomplishments. Perhaps her most extraordinary contribution to the movement to end violence was that which emanated from her very essence and endures in her memory. True advocacy is more than activism, duty, or responsibility. True advocacy was a way of life for Diane Reese. It was intrinsic to her very nature and apparent in her every action. What is more, Diane Reese possessed the incredible capacity to instill that advocacy spirit in others, to inspire camaraderie and turn a movement into a community.
The DREAM Award honors an individual who incorporates and demonstrates the spirit and promise of true advocacy in all aspects of life—one who emulates Ms. Reese’s commitment to clear and ethical communication, (her) eagerness to collaborate in the spirit of true partnership, and (her) deep respect for the dignity, worth, and humanity in each one of us.